Jun 20, 2014

Cover Reveal: Wild by Sophie Jordan





WILD by Sophie Jordan
On-sale 11/18/2014 | ISBN: 9780062279910

A good girl goes bad in the third and final book in New York Times bestselling author Sophie Jordan’s sexy New Adult romance series—where three Ivy League suite-mates testing their boundaries as they seek higher knowledge of just how far they can go.

Months after her boyfriend dumped her, Georgia can still hear the insults he hurled at her. Boring. Predictable. Tame. Tired of feeling bad, she’s ready to change her image, and go a little wild. What better way to prove her ex wrong than a hot night of adventure at the secret campus kink club?

In the shadowy den of the club, she unexpectedly runs into Logan Mulvaney, her friend’s little brother. A player extraordinaire too hot for his own good, he may be younger, but the guy is light years ahead when it comes to the opposite sex. Now he’s telling her to go home-”good girls” don’t belong here!

Georgia is tired of having others define her. She’s going to teach Logan a lesson he won’t forget-one white hot, mind-wrecking kiss . . . that leads to another . . . and another . . . and. . . . Realizing she’s way in over her head, Georgia runs.

Only Logan won’t let her go. Everywhere she goes he’s there, making her want every inch of him. Making her forget who she is. Who he is. And just how wrong they are for each other.

Sophie Jordan is an international and New York Times bestselling author whose books include historical romances and the Firelight series. When she’s not writing, she spends her time overloading on caffeine (lattes preferred), talking plotlines with anyone who will listen (including her kids), and cramming her DVR with true-crime and reality-television shows. She lives in Houston.




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Jun 16, 2014

Blog Tour: The Stepsister's Tale by Tracy Barrett


Welcome to the next stop in The Stepsister's Tale blog tour. I devoured this book within hours and if your a fan of fairy tales, retellings, or just awesome writing, then this is your book!

Interview:


1. What are some of your favorite fairy tales? Do you prefer them dark like the Brothers Grimm? Or lighter like Disney?

I like the spooky tales that the Grimms collected and I especially love the even older versions that the Grimms sweetened up for the sake of the children who were reading the stories. Those earlier tales are really crazy, more like nightmares than stories.

2. I love the idea of making people love characters that are traditionally hated. What made you write THE STEPSISTER'S TALE?

The stepsisters in every traditional version of the story that I could find (and I found lots of them!) and even in almost every retelling, are caricatures of evilness while Cinderella is impossibly good and sweet and beautiful. Granted, a few truly evil people exist and so do some saintly ones, but I don’t find stories about people at those extremes terribly compelling, especially when no reason is ever given for their extreme personalities. This is probably one reason why Ella Enchanted is so wonderful—we learn just why Ella is ridiculously obedient. That humanizes her and we care more about her. At least I do!
            Blended families are very tricky, and Isabella in The Stepsister’s Tale isn’t the first stepchild brought into a new home who thinks that everyone is cruel to her and that she has to do more than her share of the work. I thought it would be fun to explore the other side of the story. Suddenly acquiring a stunningly beautiful family member couldn’t have been easy on her stepsisters either!

3. What other fairy tales would you like to rewrite?

My next book—also with Harlequin TEEN—has the working title of Fairest: The Stepmother’s Tale. I bet you can guess what fairy tale it’s based on!

4. Any summer vacation plans or books you're excited to read?

I want to cry whenever I think of all the books I’m excited to read, because I have so little time to read them!
            I don’t really take a summer vacation because now that I no longer have a day job (I was a college professor for a long time) I’m free to travel when other people aren’t around. My husband and I are planning a trip to Sicily in the fall.

5. What is something that people would be surprised to know about you?


I used to be a skydiver! In fact, that’s how I met my husband (on the ground, not in the air—it’s a little hard to get to know someone when you’re falling at 120 miles per hour). He was a big famous skydiver who helped me pack my parachute, so I guess you can say that I literally fell in love!

About the Book:
What really happened after the clock struck midnight?
Jane Montjoy is tired of being a lady. She's tired of pretending to live up to the standards of her mother's noble family-especially now that the family's wealth is gone and their stately mansion has fallen to ruin. It's hard enough that she must tend to the animals and find a way to feed her mother and her little sister each day. Jane's burden only gets worse after her mother returns from a trip to town with a new stepfather and stepsister in tow. Despite the family's struggle to prepare for the long winter ahead, Jane's stepfather remains determined to give his beautiful but spoiled child her every desire.
When her stepfather suddenly dies, leaving nothing but debts and a bereaved daughter behind, it seems to Jane that her family is destined for eternal unhappiness. But a mysterious boy from the woods and an invitation to a royal ball are certain to change her fate...
From the handsome prince to the evil stepsister, nothing is quite as it seems in Tracy Barrett's stunning retelling of the classic Cinderella tale.

About the Author:
Tracy Barrett is the author of numerous books and magazine articles for young readers.
She holds a Bachelor's Degree with honors in Classics-Archaeology from Brown University and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Medieval Italian Literature from the University of California, Berkeley. Her scholarly interests in the ancient and medieval worlds overlap in her fiction and nonfiction works.
A grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to study medieval women writers led to the writing of her award-winning young-adult novel, Anna of Byzantium (Delacorte). Her most recent publications are King of Ithaka, a young-adult novel based on Homer's Odyssey; and the fourth book in The Sherlock Files, The Missing Heir (both Henry Holt). In September, Harcourt will publisher her young-adult retelling of the myth of the Minotaur, Dark of the Moon.
From 1999 to 2009 Tracy Barrett was the Regional Advisor for the Midsouth (Tennessee and Kentucky) with the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. She is now SCBWI's Regional Advisor Coordinator.
Tracy has taught courses on writing for children and on children's literature at various institutions and frequently makes presentations to groups of students, librarians, teachers, and others.
For an example of Tracy's presentations at writers' conferences, please see this article from Clarksville Online.
She recently resigned from Vanderbilt University, where she taught Italian, Women's Studies, English, and Humanities. Click here and herefor articles about her double life as professor and writer.
She occasionally manages to combine her two "lives" as in her presentation at a conference on the Classics in children's literature in Wales in July, 2009.
Giveaway:


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Tour:

Jun 13, 2014

Blog Tour: Interview & Giveaway with Stacey O'Neale

1
I am so excited to welcome my friend, Stacey O'Neale, onto the blog today to talk about her brand new series!

               1. Have you always wanted to be a writer? What was the first thing you ever wrote?

    1. I never thought about writing as a career until about seven years ago. My parents have always been very practical, so I never thought anything like this was possible. The very first thing I wrote was poem to my seventh grade boyfriend. LOL!

  1. What draws you to the paranormal genre?

    1. I'm an avid reader of YA and adult paranormal romance. I try to read a book a week. For me, reading is an escape. When my life gets overwhelming,  I like to disappear inside a new world. It's easy to do that with paranormal. I also love the swoony men that tend to run rapid in these worlds. ;-p

  1. Why did you decide to write a series about elementals?
    1. I was researching faeries when I kept coming across the word elemental. I googled the name and happened to stumble upon the sixteenth century works of an alchemist named Paracelsus. He identified the four types of elementals, even giving them names. My brain started spinning with ideas, and eventually, the characters came to life.

  1. Can us a little bit about the MORTAL ENCHANTMENT series?

    1. MORTAL ENCHANTMENT is a YA paranormal romance series featuring elementals. They live primarily in Avalon, but also interact in the mortal world. My series focuses around Kalin and Rowan. Kalin is the half elemental, half mortal daughter of the air court king. Rowan is the prince who walked away from the fire court crown. THE SHADOW PRINCE was written in his POV, while MORTAL ENCHANTMENT was written from Kalin's.

5.      Can you share a teaser of MORTAL ENCHANTMENT with our readers?

a.       The best teaser is the prequel novella, THE SHADOW PRINCE. It's FREE on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Also, the first chapter of MORTAL ENCHANTMENT is at the end of the novella.

6.      What scene was your favorite to write in MORTAL ENCHANTMENT?

a.       Chapter Twenty. I had that scene in my head even before I knew how the book would end. It's very swoon-worthy. I think readers will enjoy it. J

  1. What was the hardest scene to write in MORTAL ENCHANTMENT?
    1. It's difficult to answer this without giving anything away. I will say there's a scene where a character thinks they are about to uncover something big, but it ends up crashing and burning in their face. It was tough to write because the character feels completely responsible.

  1. We first met Rowan in THE SHADOW PRINCE. Has he changed in any way from the prequel to now? If so, how?

    1. Yes, he has definitely evolved. He lost so much in THE SHADOW PRINCE. He's matured because of it, but also gotten a bit darker in MORTAL ENCHANTMENT. On the outside, he's developed his skills with weapons. When you add that in with his fire magic, I would say he's gotten pretty dangerous.

  1. Who are some of your favorite authors?
    1. I have a list of what I call my auto-buys. I will read anything by these authors: Gena Showalter, Jennifer L. Armentrout, Richelle Mead, Cassandra Clare, Holly Black, and Melissa Marr.
  2. What are you working on next?
    1. I'd like to finish the first book in an adult science fiction romance series I started last year. I'm about halfway there. Afterwards, I have to write the second book in the MORTAL ENCHANTMENT series. Needless to say, 2014 will be a busy year for me. J

“Mortal Enchantment spins a unique twist on elemental mythology. This series is not to be missed.” 
Jennifer L. Armentrout, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author
 

In Kalin Matthew's world, elementals control the forces of nature. They are divided into four courts: air, woodland, fire, and water. At sixteen she will leave the life she's built with her mortal mother. Kalin will move to Avalon to rule with her father—the elemental king of the air court. Along the way, she's attacked by a fire court assassin and saved by Rowan, a swoon-worthy elemental with a questionable past. 

Worst of all, she learns her father is missing. 

To rescue him, Kalin will have to work with a judgmental council and a system of courts too busy accusing each other of deceit to actually be able to help her. But, they aren’t her biggest challenge. With the Midwinter’s Ball only five days away, Kalin must take over her father’s duties, which includes shifting control of the elements—power Kalin has yet to realize. 

As Rowan attempts to train her, a war looms between the four courts. If Kalin fails, her father will die and the courts will fall, but the betrayal she’s about to uncover may cost her even more...
Available Exclusively at Amazon eBook for $2.99 and Paperback for $8.99
Before you read MORTAL ENCHANTMENT, make sure you check out the FREE prequel
novella, THE SHADOW PRINCE!
Every sacrifice has consequences.

Sixteen-year-old Rowan has spent most of his life living among the mortals—learning to control the element of fire, impatiently awaiting the day his vengeful mother, Queen Prisma, will abdicate her throne. When he finally returns to Avalon for his coronation, his mother insists he must first prove his loyalty to the court by completing a secret mission:

Kill Kalin, the half-human, half-elemental daughter of the air court king.

Willing to do anything to remove his mother from power, he agrees to sacrifice the halfling. He returns to the mortal world with his best friend, Marcus, determined to kill the princess. But as he devises a plan, he starts to question whether or not he's capable of completing such a heinous task. And what price he will pay if he refuses?
Available for FREE on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Also available in PRINT from Amazon

Author Bio
Stacey O'Neale lives in Annapolis, Maryland. When she's not writing, she spends her time fangirling over books, blogging, watching fantasy television shows, cheering for the Baltimore Ravens, and hanging out with her husband and daughter.
Her career in publishing started as a blogger-turned-publicist for two successful small publishers. Stacey writes young adult paranormal romance and adult science fiction romance. Her books always include swoon-worthy heroes, snarky heroines, and lots of kissing.
Stacey loves hearing from readers. Follow her on Twitter @StaceyONeale, look for her on Facebook, Pinterest, and GoodReads. You can also visit her blog at http://staceyoneale.com/.

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Jun 9, 2014

BEA 2014 Recap: Part 3

Saturday
May 31

So let's talk about Saturday. Blogger Con. The Blogger Con. Also known as Book Hell on Earth.

But hold on. First let's cover the Bloomsbury Blogger Breakfast. Held at their offices (which admittedly, is one of my favorite publisher offices), it was hosted by the awesome team of Lizzy, Erica, Emily, and Courtney. It was a fun, intimate gathering where they let us take shelfies - and Bloomsbury has some amazing shelves - and meet authors Sarah Maas and Jessica Day George.

Nicole and I even got to recreate Emily & Erica's photo:



And then we may have used Lizzy as a photographer for an impromptu Heir of Fire-inspired photo shoot:





Shortly after we left and headed to BEA. To Book Con. To Hell.

Here's a video I took when we stepped out of the cab. The line stretched around the Javits and then there were so many lines once you got inside. It was a chaotic, jumbled mess.

video

Going into the actual Book Con area was insane. I almost wondered if I missed the part where I was supposed to sign a waiver saying I wouldn't sue if I was trampled to death. I had my handy dandy schedule which honestly had like 5 signings I wanted and 1 panel. All that went out the window when I got to the autographing area.




But it's cool. Because there was security guards to make sure things didn't get out of hand.


Um .... Can someone get them a Red Bull? 

I swung by the Spencer Hill Press booth to grab a ticket for Jennifer Armentrout's signing of The Return and ran into Kate and Damaris, who were much calmer than I was, despite their booth being mobbed.


Knowing the way BEA worked, I decided to go to the autograph area (*shudder*) and find the line for Jen's signing, which would start in a little over an hour. Because as any BEA attendee knows, lines for authors, especially popular ones, start lining up at least an hour in advance. 

So I, along with Jen and Gabrielle, embraced my inner pinball and went into the crowd. We finally made it to where Jen's signing would be and I walked over to the girl in charge of that line, a totally awesome BookCon worker named Catherine. I asked her about the Jennifer Armentrout line and she said, "It's not starting until 10:30." The signing was at 11, it was now 9:50. She was very adamant that the line would not start until she handed the first person in line the whiteboard with the signing info on it. The same board she was clutching like a buoy as people slammed into her.

Fair enough. I asked if I could hang out near her anyway. She shrugged and said sure and I turned to tell Jen and Gabrielle what was going on, and when I did, they had been joined by another group of bloggers who wanted to attend the signing.

I relayed that the line wouldn't officially start until 10:30 so Jen and Gabrielle opted to try Daisy Whitney's line for The Fire Artist while I unofficially held our unofficial spots in the unofficial line.

What happened next was pure insanity and I'm not even sure how it went down, but I essentially wound up working Book Con for the next 2 hours. More and more people started coming up, asking about Jen's signing. Some had tickets from SHP, some looked at me like I was nuts. Catherine and I told everyone where to go to get a ticket and finally, by around 10:15, the crowd for Jen's signing had turned into a mob that had to be moved.

But Catherine was stuck working the line for the signing that was currently going on and couldn't leave her spot, so I volunteered to corral everyone and get a line set up. Kate came over from SHP and passed out tickets to everyone, mindful that they only had 250 copies of The Return for the signing.

Which is awesome, except that 500 people showed up. Shortly before Jennifer Armentrout's signing, Jen returned (Gabrielle ran away for the BEA side of the floor to escape the crowds) and Damaris arrived. Jen and I got our books signed first and then dropped our bags behind the signing desk and I helped control the crowd and direct people while Jen made sure everyone had a post-it with their name for the signing. 

What started as a massive headache actually became fun (I thrive in chaotic situations), and it helps that Jen Armentrout has some of the best fans. While the back of the line was waiting, I got them to cheer for Seth:

video

Plus some of my favorite bloggers and friends were in this line as well.






The signing went over, and for the most part, people were kind and fun and just went with the crazy mess that Book Con was.

After Jen's signing wrapped up - oh, and did I mention she was signing next to Cassandra Clare and Holly Black who we got to meet? - I vacated the Book Con area and wandered the exhibit hall floor, which was pretty much a ghost town, and chatted with a few friends before leaving for the day and calling an end to my BEA adventures.

So final Book Con thoughts? Book Con isn't a bad idea. But the way it was handled was a disaster waiting to happen. Lines and crowds aside, it was unsafe to put 10,000 people in a space that small and expect it to work. I heard the area where panels were held was even worse.

Book Con proved that there is definitely room for a consumer based type of show, and maybe it could piggyback on the BEA hype. But combining the two - even for a day - was not something that should be repeated. Ever.

Jun 5, 2014

BEA 2014 Recap: Part 2

Thursday & Friday
May 29 & 30

Thursday morning came way too early, but nonetheless, the 5 women in my room scrambled to get out the door. My mom and aunt headed over to the taping of Live with Kelly and Michael while Jen, Gabrielle and I got our stuff together and headed to the Javits for day one of BEA. 

Thankfully we had all been invited to the Harlequin TEEN breakfast again this year - an event that was a big highlight for all of us last year. I cannot express my total and utter love for the folks at Harlequin TEEN. Not just the authors (although they're amazing, too), but Tashya, Lisa, Annie, T.S., Margo and Jennifer, you guys are rockstars and I adore you all. Any chance I can hang out with you, I will.

I loved the round-table, speed-dating set up. We got 5 minutes with an author or editor before they switched tables. So I got to see Jen Armentrout (who I love), Julie Kagawa (adorable!), Adi Alsaid (so sweet), Robin Talley (super-talented), Alexandra Addornetto (gorgeous), and


Dawn Metcalf (such a doll) in addition to the fabulous people listed above. Plus we got an awesome tote - this was seriously the year of the tote for BEA goers - with copies of several books inside. 

After this, Gabrielle and I headed upstairs and got in line for the Harlequin signing that had Jeaniene Frost and Ann Aguirre amongst others. We took turns wandering around and jumping in and out of lines, popping by booths and saying hello to people. I loved how relaxed I felt this year - I didn't feel that overwhelming urge to hit every single signing ever

I was able to grab a few books I was really excited about (like Stone Cold Touch) and I also managed to avoid being mugged for having this little beauty in my bag all day:



But that wasn't for BEA - that was for the #YAParty happening later that night. After a few more signings and wandering, we left and headed to the hotel to get ready for the MacKids Happy Hour.

This is one of my favorite parties (possibly because it's hosted by one of my favorite people, Ksenia) and I loved that so many of my #YADC friends were in attendance. I was able to bounce around and mingle with some awesome people (OK, maybe not bounce since my foot was about to explode from pain), but then I had to duck out early with Andye (and Jen & Gabrielle) to help go get ready for the #YAParty.

Last year I was a last-minute add on to an awesome party known as the "Rooftop Party" by Liza Wiemer - someone I barely knew at all, save for a few comments, tweets and emails. Fast forward to this year and Liza (and Andye) asked me to help them plan and organize the YA Author/Blogger Party. I had an absolutely blast and nearly bruised multiple ribs laughing while planning with these two, but the night of the party everything came together better than I think any of us expected.

We recruited my mom and aunt (Gabrielle's grandmother) to help - they were the crazy ladies who checked people in and handed out name tags. So having them there with me was an added bonus.

The party was a huge success. So many bloggers, authors, and publishers coming together for an awesome night of fun thanks to Liza. I finally had a chance to reconnect with a lady I absolutely adore, Cara Lynn Shultz (author of The Dark World), and we may have re-enacted a scene from Dirty Dancing that was filmed. I learned some fascinating info from Michelle Madow (whose index finger is the same size as my pinkie), and was able to hang out with authors like Josephine Angelini, Amy Plum, Jennifer Armentrout, Danielle Ellison, and so many more!

#YAParty

Hannah & Josie Angelini

Marie Rutkoski & Damaris


Hannah & J2 

Hannah & Liza

Raffle Table

Goodie Bags

Cara Lynn Shultz & Hannah

Nicole, Hannah & Jen

Nicole & Hannah

Hannah & Gabby

Patti, Gabrielle, Hannah & Cheryl

Friday was a fairly non-eventful day. We got to BEA and waited to get in line. As I was walking up, I was suddenly and violently accosted by a flying, tiny flying Mundie Mom. Katie won that round of tackle hugs (OK, she won the BEA Tackle Hug Battle, too). Meeting Katie was one of those amazing moments that make me so glad I started blogging because she is just such a sweet, genuine person.

I bounced around from signing to signing, hanging out with Tara Fowler (Penguin) and Cassie McGinty (Disney) for a bit and chatting about blogging and some upcoming books they're excited about. I'm also starting to think being petite and gorgeous are prerequisites for being in publishing. I also found Julie Kagawa and got to hold 3 of the dragons in my hands ... I may have treated them with more care than I usually use when holding a baby.

I also had the chance to attend the SimonTeen luncheon which was full of awesome authors like Martina Boone, Kresley Cole, Scott Westerfeld, Christina Lauren, and Becca Fitzpatrick. And I got to see local YADC author Miranda Kenneally as well as Kiera Cass. 






Finally Gabrielle and I left and went back to the hotel to meet up with our respective grandmother and mother and go to this amazing place called McHale's that we eat at whenever we're in the city. It's this awesome Irish pub with a great, relaxed feel and delicious food. But imagine our shock when we got the same waitress from last year

It may seem totally random that we knew our waitress - and even stranger yet that she remembered us - but as someone who worked in food service for years, I know a fantastic employee when I see one, and Anne is the standard I hold all my waitresses to. We totally made her take a picture with us before we left.

After this we went back to the hotel and went to sleep. Little did we know how much we would need it for the day that was ahead of us.

Oh. And I saw a ghost in my hotel room.